Price paid: C$ 635
Purchased from: eBay
Sound — 6
I'm not a fan of 7 strings (6 string with fat gauge strings tuned B to B sounds infinitely better than a 7 string). Mostly because pickups for 6 string have many more years of development. 6 string EMG 81 produces much more warmth in the tone than the 81-7, which sounds more rigid and bright (comparing mahogany body neck thru Jackson KE2 using EMG 81/85 against the LTD Hex-7 with EMG 81-7/707. Aside from the pickups not sounding as warm as I'd like, the guitar still has plenty of clarity and attack and by no means sounds bad. Currently using a Blackheart BH5 combo and a Rivera 100w Knucklehead Reverb Head, eminence and Vintage 30 speakers respectively. Read a lot of reviews on this site using GARBAGE Amplifiers. These two amps can make ANY guitar sound amazing, therefore all I can add is that this 7 string sounds incredible through a class A tube amp. I enjoy using the tone control to achieve different sounds, so that is one subjective drawback of the sound of the guitar. I cannot (without drilling a hole and wiring a tone pot) alter the tone of the pickups much. The volume seems to work like a tone by cutting down the sharp brightness of the EMGs, but I'd still prefer a tone control. "What kind of sounds can the guitar make? How much variety?" Really? Any guitar can play any style, what a ridiculous question. Comes down to your fingers, not the instrument. I personally play Rock, Punk, and Metal, and I've never been restricted by a guitar. (SG, LP, KingV, Kelly, Soloist, Fusion, Tele, Strat, etc. They can all do the same thing with a slightly different tone. LTD HEX-7 is no different: warm jazz tones, bright clean country twang, and Clear heavy Distortion can all be produced.
Overall Impression — 6
Like mentioned earlier I play rock, punk and metal. Rush, Boston, NOFX, Kreator, Carcass, Megadeth, Annihilator, Bloodbath, Arch Enemy, etc. I cover a lot of tunings with the music I play (standard E down to B) but everything is written on 6 strings, so I've been using multiple guitars each with a diff gauge strings and tuned accordingly. Currently all my guitars have OFRs which are a pain in the ass to change the tuning between songs. To remedy this and thin down to a single guitar I chose to find a decent 7 string with decent pickups and a solid bridge. This way a single guitar can cover rush to bloodbath yet still has the majority of characteristics I want in a guitar. I've been playing for 15years and collecting/trading gear for over 10 years. Have owned over 30 different guitars and about 10 amps both solid state and tube. Lots of experience with different sounds and products to compare this LTD against. It is hard to find complete correct specs for this guitar, so I suppose I "Wish" I had asked about the nut because the MH-417 comes with an earvana compensated nut and HEX-7 comes with a piece of lame plastic. The earvana offset nut allows for intonation to be more accurate across the entire fretboard. This means that notes and chords will be much more accurate and in tune regardless of position. It's only about $100 to instal my own earvana nut, luckily the prive on the MH-417 was $200 more than the HEX-7 and did not include a hardcase. If it were stolen or lost I would get an MH-417 instead (granted they werent sold out in north america again). MH has fret markers and a more versatile bodyshape. This is a signature model guitar for Nergal, the "Mustaine" of Behemoth. I personally do not listen to behemoth or am a fan in any sense, which is a plus since this guitar does not have any stupid "autograph" decal anywhere on the guitar. The only link to the contributing artist is the 2 headed eagle crest/chaos inlay and the eagle/chaos symbol on the guitar body. Both are enjoyable to look at, highly detailed, and keep this guitar from being a plain satin black v. As I said earlier I compared this to the myriad of products I've used in the past. The closest comparison would be the ESP RV350ALSCYTHE, both having a thick neck profile, v shaped bodies, EMG brand pickups (though HZ are not active in the ESP). Thinking about it, the EMG HZ passive pickups are more similar in sound to the 81-7 than the 81-7 compared to a regular 81. Why did you choose this one? I was struggling to find any LTD MH-417S in North America, everyone was sold out. Then when I did the online order my credit card info was stolen by a malware program. After getting all that BS worked out the LTD HEX-7 appeared on eBay and was only a days Drive away and was very similar to the MH-417, that's the main reason I bought this guitar... couldnt get an MH-417. + Anything you wish it had? ...again, tone pot and inlays but that is subjective. Overall I give it a 6, room for many improvements, yet far above most guitars out there. To give you an idea of how I rate guitars, I'd give my ESP RV a 9, Les Paul Custom Black Beauty an 7, and Jackson KE2 an 8. I've had many ESP and LTD models and I am always impressed. Even the Indonesian (and other asian makes) are great quality under this brand. After owning many "made in USA" guitars I can say for the hobbyist guitarist an Asian guitar is where it's at, ESPECIALLY ESP/LTD. Stay away from China still.
Reliability & Durability — 6
+ Will this guitar withstand live playing? + Does the hardware seem like it will last? + Are the strap buttons solid? + Can you depend on it? Would you use it on a gig without a backup? Yes + Is the finish good enough to last, or does it seem thin and easy to wear off with lots of playing? Hard to say since this guitar is very new. Friend has an LTD AX in their satin finish and it is still near mint after 4 years and another buddy has the satin black LTD EC which is even older and the finish still looks great. Having the same finish, I'd claim this one to be just as good and durable. Find that satin is much easier to clean since it does not show any streaking or spots as easily as gloss finishes.
Action, Fit & Finish — 6
Guitar was purchased off eBay from an ESP dealer, so the guitar was setup by the dealer. Very rare that a guitar is unplayable from a dealer (I've only run into a terrible setup from a private seller). Straight neck, low action, pickup height adjusted well. I won't need to do any adjustments until I change strings/guage from the stock factory ones. Opened the case and was shredding and soloing with ease. Quality for this Korean Guitar amazes me. Even though it was produced in Korea, the quality (in appearance, not woods) matches my ESP Custom shop (Japan) and "feels" higher in quality than my Gibson LP Custom (USA)... Overweight clunky POS.
Features — 6
2011 Korean made LTD HEX-7. - 25.5 inch scale, 24 extra jumbo frets. - Mahogany body, neck through maple neck, rosewood fretboard. Single 2 headed eagle inlay at 12th (Polish crest looking thing) - Flying V shape, similar to a Jackson King V with an ESP F shape headstock. Hangs very well with no neck heaviness, although on a whole the guitar is heavier than most being mahogany. - Tone Pros locking bridge, string through body - Active EMG 81-7 bridge and 707 neck - Single Volume and 3 way switch - ESP brand locking tuners - Came with an ESP form fitted hardshell case - Great 7 string with quality matching my ESP Custom shop RV350ALSCYTHE. - Subjective improvements include fret markers (vinyl decals will work) and an Earvana compensated nut (LTD MH-417 comes with one)